Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Weeks 21-24 with Baby Rubiks

:: Weeks 21-24 ::

Holy growth spurt!  Its sort of funny actually looking at this picture because it doesn't look like much change from last month. But from my aerial view that I get 24/7, the belly is a-growin. I realized that this is probably the last month of getting to really look and feel pregnant without all the super fun discomforts. Which is sort of funny because I keep thinking about how uncomfortable I already am. Oh boy :)

:: Symptoms ::

I am so thankful the headaches have simmered down and the nasal issues have gotten more manageable (thanks Mom for the tips!). The lastest and greatest have been the beginnings of second-half heartburn (which is actually somehow different than first trimester heartburn), braxton-hicks, itchy skin thanks to belly expansion, and sleep is still touch and go. And the struggle has gotten real in regards to bending over, putting on shoes, or getting up off the floor. Way, way too early for this.

:: Movement ::

I'm thankful this kid has a few inches to grow before she gets access to my ribs! She is a strong mover and sits, head down, nice and low all the time. At my 24 week appointment the midwife was impressed by her strength. It took a while to find her heartbeat (because she is sitting lower than the midwife was expecting) but there was no concern about he being alive because this girl would hit the doppler so hard the midwife was having trouble keeping it in place.

:: Missing Most ::

I'm already growing out of a lot of my clothes already. Vain, I know. Still, I'd rather be getting creative with my wardrobe any day for this kiddo.

:: Best Part ::

I've had a few fun evenings watching what look like mini bombs going off inside my stomach. It's the best phase, getting to see and feel her move around without it hurting much yet.

:: Hubby ::

The naming wars have begun! We honestly have no idea what this girl's name is going to be. I have a favorite, and am trying my dardnest to convince Josh of how wonderful it is. He still hasn't found a name he loves, but I think that's to my advantage thus far.

Getting her self "maked-up" for the day.
:: Dellie ::

She's been a little confused lately about the fact that she really is having a sister.  She asks a lot about why God gave her a sister and other people get brothers. She's also been asking a lot about how big her sister will be when she's born. Her initial guess was about 2 inches long, and doesn't believe me when I tell her that the baby will be as big as some of her dolls. I'm guessing its all just a lot to wrap around your brain when you're three. She's also still stuck on the name Margaret Tiger and worried about her toys getting chewed on.

She has wanted to "feel the baby" regularly, although that has consisted of poking my belly button and exclaiming "it moved!"

:: Looking Forward To ::

We're currently in a point in time where a lot is unknown about our future, particularly with graduating, finding a job, and moving (or not moving). I am really looking forward to all of those unknowns being answered one way or another. I know it isn't really baby related, but it's been such a big part of our world right now that I can't even really comprehend another child coming into our life without getting overwhelmed. It has made it harder to be purely excited for her arrival without a tinge of fear of what else in our world needs to shake out.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Halloween 2015

This year marked the beginning of Kiddo deciding her own costumes. Not gonna lie, it makes me a bit sad. Somehow the concept of Halloween came up a couple months ago with her and she decided from that moment on she was going to be a princess.

For a while she was pretty comfortable with wearing one of her dress up princess dresses (which is quite nice, being handmade by my mom and all), but I was given a Sophia the First dress as a hand-me-down and decided to save it until the last moment in hopes of a big reveal right before Halloween. (Also to ward off any chance of her wearing it incessantly throughout the month of October.)  

Reveal was more of a success than I imagined it would be. The first official costuming time came and I took the chance - here's how it went down:

Me: "Dells, I know you've wanted to wear your yellow princess dress, but would you like to wear this (whipping out Sophia dress) instead?"

Kiddo: eyes huge, heavy breathing for a full minute. "...Really?..."

This girl took the. best. care. of this dress for a full week. She went to great toddler lengths to make sure she had her matching crown, "ambulance" necklace and appropriate foot gear every stinking time she got dressed. So even though it was far from any wonderful ideas I would have had for her costume this year, the outcome was totally worth it.

Here's some pictures from the events we did. I may have gotten close to zealous with all the potential fun to be had, especially since Dellie was even more excited for Halloween than I was.

Her first choice for a pumpkin was the "bumpily one."

She was eventually persuaded into a more paint-able pumpkin, which she painted with just as much gusto as last year.

We went to a pumpkin patch with some friends, complete with haystack maze,

tractor ride (which she loved so much she waited 20 minutes in line to ride it again),

and another pumpkin of her very own to cover in complementary stickers.

On Friday, we went trick or treating with all of Dellie's church buddies in Downtown Mesa.

She clearly had no fun, what so ever.

And Friday night we dressed up ourselves and the house for a quite fantastic Halloween shindig,

which included a giant fake spider (in honor of all the real giant spiders we can't seem to get rid of in our backyard),

along with Hockey Vlad, a pregnant cow, and, by this time, Cinderella (she got tired of being Sophia, apparently). On a side note, I don't recommend The Fly (the 1958 version) if you're looking for a hokey Halloween movie.  There were only two good parts, but they weren't worth the hour and a half of backstory.

Whew, you made it! How was your Halloween? Any trick or treaters? We had about five, I think. No complaints - just means more candy for me :)

Monday, October 26, 2015

Weeks 17-20 With Baby Rubiks

This month's pose was "let's see how close we can get to mom this time!"

:: Weeks 17-20 ::

We are halfway done with cooking this little babe!  I can hardly believe how fast it feels like the time is going. As a whole, I felt like I was able to get more comfortable with a new routine that included regular naps and earlier bedtimes. The new goal is now trying to squeeze in things that I would love to be back to doing, like exercising regularly and start some early prep work for potentially moving in the next couple months (yikes!).

:: Symptoms ::

Most of the symptoms are in my head. No, seriously. Nasal congestion is just getting stronger, and starting to include semi-regular nose bleeds (yech). I've also been getting nasty headaches a few times a week.  Thankfully the doctor doesn't seem worried, but did mention that it could be a combo of hormones and poor sleep. So basically, I need to get more rest. Speaking of sleep, my dream life is pretty wild and I have been woken up fairly regularly by neighbors' late night parties, bathroom breaks, or my own child.

Story time: a couple weeks ago, I woke up around midnight to find our child in our bed, inches from my face, with one of her biggest grins to date. 

"Hi mom! I thought I would come and sleep with you and Dad for a little bit!"  

"Oh... ok." (I was not very awake at this point). 

She stayed in bed with us for about an hour, not sleeping (although she was thankfully very quiet), then said, "I think I'm ready to go back to my room now." She had never done this before, nor has it happened since.

Epilogue: around 2:30 that same night, I woke up to her crying in her room.  I went in to find out what was wrong, to which she replied, "I keep telling Minnie to let me sleep but she won't stop talking!" (insert face palm). Minnie got a stern talking and finally relented for everyone's sake.

:: Movement ::

Plenty. This little one likes it when I eat food, and will perform a few circus tricks every time I consume something. I can definitely feel rolls, shifts, bumps, jabs, and have even gotten to see them from the outside from time to time.

:: Missing Most ::

I'm missing getting to be able to get away with drinking as much caffeine as I want, when I want, without having to brace myself for the side effects if I don't eat something or drink tons of water. Same goes with sugar.

:: Best Part ::

We found out the gender this last Thursday! (I promise I will say what it is eventually.) I absolutely love getting to watch the ultrasounds. It makes it so much more real to actually see the baby moving around. This one was a bit stubborn and shy (just like their sister) and preferred to lay the wrong direction for the ultrasound tech with their legs tucked under and rear end sticking up (also just like their sister).

:: Hubby ::

From the beginning, we have both been comfortable and excited about the potentials of having either a boy or another girl. The days leading up to our ultrasound, however, it started coming out that Josh was really hoping for another girl. He realized that there could be a lot of good for our children's' bonding if they were the same gender, being that they may have a harder time with a four year age gap. I appreciated getting to see his desires for our kids and their future, along with having a great time visualizing him (of all people) being a dad of two girls!

:: Dellie ::

She decided over the last month that she most definitely wanted a sister, "just like Daniel Tiger, and her name is going to be Margaret, too."

:: Gender ::

Speaking of gender (finally!) the verdict is in.  Baby Rubiks is...

a girl!

Nest story time: during the first part of the ultrasound, we got a few "previews" of baby's gender, which both Josh and I were sure was a boy, because there was definitely something boy-looking between their legs.  When the ultrasound tech asked if we were ready, we both looked at her like, "duh, we already know, lady." Turns out, the thing between her legs was actually the umbilical cord. Next time we will leave the deciphering to the professionals.

We are all beyond excited that this little nugget is a girl. I had wanted a sister growing up very much, and as much as I know I only have romantic views of what it will be like, I am really, really grateful and excited that these two will get to experience the bond of sisterhood together.

And as far as the name "Rubiks," we're not sure if we will stick with it or switch to something a little more feminine, like "Rubiksina" or whatever. (wink)

:: Looking Forward To ::

Getting to the fun phase of feeling this little girl move around a bunch, see more of her "personality" come out (activity level, strength, how much of a hiccup-er she is, silly things like that). I'm looking forward to starting to figure out a name for her as well. (Which is most likely not going to be Margaret Tiger. Sorry, Dells.)

Friday, October 16, 2015

DIY Rain Drop Mobile

Admittedly, this project was made about six months ago - one of those "I have been meaning to do this for years and even bought all the supplies for it months ago. Better just get 'er done."

It was inspired by a combination of the paper mobiles I made for Kiddo's first birthday, plus a Pinterest find. I chose to run with the colors, clouds, and rain drops because they fit with Kiddo's room "theme" (a very loose sort of theme, if you can even call it that).

I feel like I'm a broken record saying this, but again, sewing with paper is really stupid easy. The most time consuming part was cutting out I-don't-even-know how many rain drops and clouds by hand.

DIY Rain Drop Mobile

You will need:

  • paper (duh)
  • scissors (also duh)
  • pencil and eraser
  • sewing machine and thread
  • yard stick ruler - I found one for $2 (I think?) in the paint section of our local home improvement store.
  • sanding paper/block (optional)
How you make it:

1. (This step is optional.) Sand your yard stick down to make it look more worn down-slash-get rid of the bright blue printed numbers across it. If you're feeling really crazy, you could probably also stain it a bit to make it look vintage.

2. If you have a small child, find them some sort of entertainment. If they're asleep, find yourself some sort of entertainment. A movie is a great option.

3. Either find or make a template of a cloud and a rain drop. I made one size rain drop, and two sizes of clouds.

4. Chop, chop. Trace and cut your rain drops and clouds to your heart's content. I think I cut 22 or 23 of each color rain drop, 12 large clouds, and 20 small clouds.

Note: I wanted to give the clouds more of a 3D effect, so I made double the number I wanted, sewed two paper pieces together, and slightly folded the front one to get that effect.

5. Lay out your pieces to (1) decide just how you want it to look, and (2) to keep things in order when you sew. I went through various iterations of color schemes, but decided to run with the one below.

6. Sewing time! Carefully pile the first column (top to bottom) to keep the order you want. For example, mine went cloud-two pink-cloud-three yellow-etc. Before starting to sew, give yourself about 9-12 inches of thread, which you will eventually use to tie to the yard stick.

7. Starting with the top one (cloud), sew straight from top to bottom on each piece of paper. Give about a half an inch between each piece.

Note: here are some pictures showing what I mean about the 3D clouds. I put two cloud pieces on top of each other and sewed them together. After I was done, I folded the top cloud on each side of the seam to have it pop out for effect.

Another note: if you run out of thread in the middle of one of your mobiles, don't fret.  All you need to do is get more thread in your machine, and then start sewing again on the paper over the last couple of stitches.  After you've finished, you can go back and cut off the excess thread.

8. Once all your columns are sewn together, tie them to the yard stick as evenly as you'd like. I wrapped around twice and tied super-de-duper tight, knowing it would be placed above my child's bed and would likely get some abuse from playing and tugging on it.

9. Hang it up and admire your handiwork! I simply used two nails on each end of the yard stick to set it on.  Feel free to do what you need.

Total cost: $2 (or whatever) for the yard stick. Extra cost would come if you didn't have any of the other above supplies.

Happy crafting!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Weeks 14-16 with Baby Rubiks

Welcome to the next installment of Shelby's growing belly!  After this one I will be on track and planning to write about other things, like how boring days at home can be and how mediocre my crafting ability has gotten over the last few months ;) I kid, I kid.

Also the last day I wore that dress before spilling bleach all over it. RIP.

:: Weeks 14 Through 16 ::

According to, well, everybody, including myself, trimester number two is a vast improvement from the first. The process of going from awful to normal wasn't overnight, but more a slow improvement with minor set backs. And I still need a nap every. single. day. and I crash hard around 8:30 every. single. night. I like sleep, but this level of tired has meant being okay with getting less accomplished and being a poor sport when it comes to small group and date nights. Lower energy has proven to be frustrating when I suddenly have this urge to make and clean and cook and organize and purge ALL THE THINGS but not enough energy to actually make it happen.

:: Symptoms ::

Nasal congestion has only gotten stronger, so I'm constantly blowing my nose and hacking up junk (So lady-like of me). I also get headaches pretty regularly, which I'm sort of wondering are due to sinus congestion from said congestion. Still tired in the afternoons and evenings, light sleep, crazy dreams, heartburn, more emotional, and sadly, the beginnings of tiny spider veins.

:: Aversions/Cravings ::

Aversions have basically all but disappeared, with some left over sensitivity to bathroom/diaper smells, body odor, and bad breath, which I'm assuming will stick around until well after the baby is born (just like last time). I have "craved" (if you will) water. I feel dehydrated constantly no matter how much I consume in a day. I have been finding myself wanting to eat fruit simply for their liquid content.

:: Sleep ::

I'm definitely a light sleeper now, but thankfully the midnight bathroom trips are not as regular. I have been waking up almost every morning with a sore shoulder and neck. And I already whipped out the body pillow to help ease some of the hip discomfort.

:: Movement ::

I really, really, really didn't expect this one.  I didn't feel anything until 18 weeks with Dellie, and was totally expecting the same.  BUT.  At fourteen weeks I started feeling this low abdominal discomfort that would almost take my breath away every so often. Initially I chalked them up to super early braxton hicks (which I found out is actually okay after frantically googling whether or not having them this early was okay). After tracking them for a couple days I realized they weren't braxton hicks but actually a rolling baby.

I'm sorry, what?!?

Turns this nugget is a bit of a mover and a shaker, at least so far. Since then I have felt rolling, flutters, and have even been able to make out their body shape from outside when they are positioned just right.

:: Gender ::

Still don't know, but I have been getting a strong sense it's a boy.

:: Hubby ::

Josh started school around the same time as I started feeling better, which I think was a bit of God's grace. He's definitely pretty excited, but he has mentioned multiple times that its been off-set by the other big things in our world that are also looming, like graduating, finding a job, and possibly moving. I totally get it, and definitely have found myself more preoccupied with what will happen after graduation than what life will look like with another child.

Trying to convince me she still fits into baby clothes.
:: Dellie ::

She still lets me know pretty regularly that she's got her own "baby for Minnie in her belly too." I asked her if she wanted a brother or sister, to which she replied that she wanted both. It took a few tries to finally explain that she had to choose, 'cause Mama definitely wasn't carrying two. She wants to name her sibling Minnie ("even if it's a boy") or Purtain (rhymes with curtain). She's also not sure she wants to share her toys with them because she "doesn't want them to chew on everything." 

:: Missing Most ::

A really good night's sleep and the ability to get everything accomplished that I set out to do in a day.

:: Best Part ::

Feeling the baby move semi-regularly has really helped things feel more real. I've also felt like I am finally in a safe enough zone to seriously start planning what sorts of things I'd like to make for this baby.

::  Looking Forward To ::

Looking more pregnant and less like I ate too much pizza. I'm also looking forward to starting on some baby crafty projects!

Monday, October 5, 2015

First Trimester With Baby "Rubiks" Meyer

Well, no joke, I'm a little nervous about posting pregnancy updates. Getting to write up these posts has been something I have been waiting and dreaming of getting to do on this blog for two years now. And I do really want to have a record of how this pregnancy went, with this blog being a logical place to have it. However, I also now understand the pain that can come from seeing others walk through pregnancy while you yourself are struggling to have one of your own. In light of that, I decided to stick with once a month updates once I am done playing catch up (being that I'm already well into the second trimester right now).  This is also in part because I don't know if I will be able to keep up with anything more often! I hope that there will be understanding and a willingness to celebrate with me with each post.

You may also feel free to just skip reading these posts when they show up if you so choose :)

Well here goes the first one!

13 weeks. Most of that is bloat.

:: First Trimester ::

We affectionately have named this little nugget "Rubiks." Yes, like the Rubik's cube. Why? Because it felt like I were constantly guessing how I would be feeling in the next hour. Sick? Exhausted? Starving? Moody? Just fine? It was a never ending puzzle.

(For those of you who are curious, we called Dellie "Sparky" because of how fierce the first trimester sickness was with her. Once we found out she was a girl she was renamed "Sparkle." If only she knew that now.  She would be offended we changed her name after she was born!)

:: Symptoms ::

Disclaimer - there might be some talk about girl body parts and stuff.  I will do my best to be tasteful about it, but if you think you might be uncomfortable by it, skip this part.

My first pregnancy symptom was realizing that I was growing out of my bras. I would not have even taken a pregnancy test if it weren't for how crazy sore and large I was getting. 

Halfway through week five the nausea started kicking in, and it was 24/7 car sick style nausea and headaches for three weeks. The nausea slowed to only (ha!) when I was hungry, really full, ate something I shouldn't have, and smelled or saw any aversions - which there were plenty. Just like last time, the throwing up and gag reflex started up right as the nausea slowed down.  I didn't puke nearly as much as I did with Dellie, but I still had at least one time a week where I lost my lunch (or breakfast).

Other symptoms included crazy exhaustion (like I was done with the day by 10 AM), stuffy nose and sinuses (yep, its a symptom), bloating, a wee bit of swelling around the ankles, poor sleep, crazy dreams, crying over the silliest things, and hormone headaches.

:: Aversions/Cravings ::

I craved salty food (soft pretzels, bagels, tortilla chips, cheese, etc) something fierce for about a week - which was weird because I had zero cravings with Dellie.  But after getting my hands on an everything bagel for dinner one night, I wanted nothing to do with them for the rest of the first trimester. 

Aversions, oh aversions. I had plenty. The strongest was bacon - it was so strong that even just seeing pictures of bacon made my stomach turn.  Another (not food) was bathroom smells, any and all. It got so bad sometimes I would find myself gagging while using the toilet. And changing a poopy diaper? Guaranteed to send me puking.

:: Missing Most ::

Figuring out what to eat without wanting to cry, and getting a good night's sleep.

:: Sleep ::

I woke up during the night to pee most nights, and on top of that became a really light and uncomfortable sleeper. And the dreams got pretty crazy.

:: Gender ::

Don't know, but I started wondering if it's a boy because of some symptoms being different this time around at the very beginning. Also because it seems like every body I know has had an oldest girl and boy for their second :)

:: Hubby ::

You guys?  I have a really good husband.  This man would come home from work and take over home life like a boss. Cooking meals when he could, keeping the house clean, taking kiddo out for a couple hours when I just couldn't imagine staying awake another minute. It wasn't easy for him to do all this, but he handled it without a complaint. He's a keeper.

Dellie wanted her own "belly picture" too. In her favorite swim suit, ready to go to the splash park.

:: Dellie ::

She is old enough that she could understand Mama was sick because there's a baby growing in her belly, but young enough that her processing all this gets a little creative.  Within a couple weeks, she also "had a brother or sister for Minnie" growing in her own belly, and would complain of not feeling very well either - usually in an attempt to get more TV time ;) We took her to the first ultrasound, hoping it would help the whole thing be more real for her, but unfortunately it just confused the heck out her.

:: Best Part ::

My favorite part hands down was getting to see this little nugget in an ultrasound at 9 weeks.  The first ultrasound with Dellie was the anatomy scan at 20 weeks, and I was always a little jealous of the other moms who got to have an early sneak peek while the baby still looked like a wriggling gummy bear.

We also were extremely excited to find a doctor close by who is very pro-VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean).  It was a huge relief to so quickly find a doctor who's opinion and practice of VBACs was exactly what we had been hoping to find.

In a weird way too, I was really excited when each symptom started showing up, because it meant there was a baby growing in there! By the end I was definitely more than ready to be back to feeling normal, because having our world basically shut down for two months was really, really hard. 

:: Can't Wait For ::

By the end of the first trimester, I was so ready to be feeling better. Being unable to really be a functioning mom and a wife both physically and mentally for two months got to be very frustrating. I also would to have random "good days" where I would think I was finally coming out of the haze, only to get thrown back into feeling like death the next day. While having a day where I didn't feel awful was short relief, it also came with a lot of fears that something was wrong. Getting out of the stage where miscarriage is most common was a huge relief as well.

Also a visible belly that more pregnant instead of just bloated :)

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Catching Up

Well, hello there.

Long time, no see, little blog of mine.  It's been a nice break, but I'm ready to give a little catch up.  Especially since I have some really wonderful things to tell you about.

These last six months have been pretty good as a whole. I felt like I started embracing the reality of being a mom of one (instead of spending all my energy longing for two). Not that I was the best at it, but the more I released, the freer I felt to just enjoy that I do have a crazy, funny, wide eyed little child who has the whole world in front of her. And it was my job to show it to her.

We spent many a February and March morning walking to the neighborhood orchid tree.  Affectionately named the "purple tree," it became a favorite spot for both kiddo and myself to adventure to.

I also decided it was time to start teaching her the finer things of outdoor life - like blowing dandelion seeds.

The husband has a particular form of nerdism which endears him to board and card games. We felt it was time to start swaying our child's interests in a similar direction, which so far has proven to be successful.

Over spring break, we were invited to visit Josh's parents in Palm Springs and stay the weekend in the beautiful home of some of Josh's extended family.  Kiddo spent most of the weekend like this when she wasn't sniffing every single flower on the premises - of which there were many.

Dellie went on her first hike in May for Josh's birthday.  We took the short trail up "A" mountain by campus with the dogs. Radar was possibly the most excited one out of us all.  

Since said hike, Dellie has also been apt to remind us that we "hiked the mountain one time with the A for Adelle on it."

After school ended in May, my parents were so very, very kind and took us to Disneyland. Dellie fell in love with Minnie Mouse from day one. We may or may not regret letting her choose a Minnie doll of her very own to take home.

As to be expected, the level of crazy has upped in the house as kiddo has gotten older. Her sense of humor has become both a joy and a bit of a trial, but I suppose that is to be expected when one has a three year old.

Over the summer, Dellie caught a cold that turned into a cough that went south - right into her lungs. She was put on antibiotics and a nebulizer for about two weeks, which thankfully healed her right up.

We ended up taking an emergency trip back to Colorado at the end of July when my mom was diagnosed with cancer. Thankfully, the cancer turned out to be not nearly as serious as was originally thought. None of us Phoenicians complained about the chance to get out of the 100+ degree heat either.

And here it we are at the end of September, making short jaunts out to see the flowers again in the early morning hours before it gets too hot. Dellie has started naming the flowers she sees to her liking. These ones, her favorite, she affectionately calls "corn flowers."

Both her and I are beyond happy to seen summer ending, both because it means the heat is going away, and also because I'm finally feeling better enough to do normal life again.  Which brings me to the final bit of news to catch up on:

We are finally expecting baby number two!

It has been a long two years, but God has shown himself faithful and good.  Things have been going very well with this pregnancy, and we are all very excited (and a little terrified) that its really, finally happening!

As for the future, the next sixth months are going to be... interesting, I suppose. Josh is in his last semester of school at ASU.  Can you believe we're actually at this point too? Me neither. We will be walking through college graduation, job hunting, possibly moving out of state (for a job), and having another baby. Whew. It's a lot of huge unknowns for us. We have likened it to feeling like we're staring at a cliff we're supposed to jump off of in just a few short months. And believe that we will land safely somewhere that we can't see from here.


But we have seen God walk us through each crazy unknown we've been through before. We trust that He's built that landing spot we can't see to be a good place for us. So we continue to pray that we would be peaceful and trusting of where God will take our family next, and that we would be ready to jump when the time comes.